PNG, Wallis and Futuna undefeated after two matches in men’s volleyball

Silas Dame (6) spikes in Nauru's men's volleyball 3-0 loss against New Caledonia. Photo by Vere Freeman.

Silas Dame (6) spikes in Nauru’s men’s volleyball 3-0 loss against New Caledonia. Photo by Vere Freeman.

By Lydia Kaia, Games News Service

PORT MORESBY, July 13 – The Papua New Guinea Omoas continued their unbeaten streak in men’s volleyball at the 2015 Pacific Games with a straight sets win against Melanesian neighbours Solomon Islands on Sunday.

The Omoas (which means Eagles in tok pisin) entered day two’s competition on the back of a 25-16, 25-13, 25-17 straight-sets win against Guam in the tournament opener on Saturday, and despite stiff third-set competition, defeated Solomon Islands 25-13, 25-16, 25-21 to send a reminder to rest of the competition they are a force to be reckoned with.

Seasoned campaigners Joel Kou, and wontoks Ula and Jeffrey Gima led the way for PNG, while coaching director Mathew Collins said his players performed as he expected and are looking forward to Monday’s pool A blockbuster against Tahiti at 17:00.

“Tahiti will be our toughest competitors and this could be our hardest game,” Collins said. “In preparation for this (Tahiti) match, we rested some of our key players but we are optimistic. Gold is our goal.”

Solomon Island’s team manager, Walter Tesuata, said although his side lost they were glad they had the opportunity to play against teams like PNG to gain experience.

“This will motivate us to do better next time,” Tesuata said.

PNG’s next opponents, Tahiti, only flew into Port Moresby on Saturday but went straight to work with a 3-0 (25-13, 25-13, 25-7) win against Kiribati in Sunday’s other pool A game.

In the day’s pool B matches, Tuvalu came from two sets down to beat Nauru 3-2 (20-25, 23-25, 25-10, 25-19, 15-9), Fiji beat American Samoa 3-1 (25-23, 20-25, 25-17, 25-22) and defending champions Wallis and Futuna quietly remained unbeaten with 3-0 (25-18, 25-22, 25-14) win against New Caledonia.

Meanwhile, in women’s competition from Sunday, pool A matches saw Fiji beat Tuvalu 3-0 (25-12, 25-10, 25-14) and American Samoa defeated Tahiti in a tight match 3-0 (25-17, 25-18, 25-21).

Volleyball continues on Monday at Taurama Aquatic Centre’s BSP Arena with five men’s and four women’s matches.

GNS lk/pg

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